Four Things I Learned From Taking a Year Off, Part 1: We Are Not the Providers, God Is

It’s a wonder how fast a year goes.

When I made the decision last January to take a year off from the public life, I made it because I felt a heaviness at the thought of regretting my life. More specifically, regretting my mothering years. I wanted to make sure I gave my best to the people God had directly put in my care; I needed to step back and take time off in order to get my priorities in order and to rest and be fully with my family.

And while this year was full of togetherness and intention and rest, it was also full of so much more. I’d love to share some of those things with you. Today I share part 1.

We Are Not the Providers, God Is

After telling my husband that I decided to quit for a year, we both had to face the reality that our lives were going to change because our income would be significantly reduced. But we would be fine because we have always lived off of his income (for the most part) and he had a steady job that brought home the bacon. We might not be able to afford the extras, but we’d make it.

Plus, getting de-stressed, being able to focus on mothering and homeschooling and homemaking, and supporting my husband as he uncovered and pursued some of his God-given longings was worth it to me.

And then came August.

My husband took a HUGE jump of faith and did something my steady, rock of a husband said he’d never do: he went self-employed.

That’s right, he quit his secure, health-insurance paying job and decided to follow the stirring in his heart. But it wasn’t a selfish thing, it was an offering from the Lord for my husband to begin again. You’ll learn more about his story and our adventure of faith in my upcoming book, but for now I want to focus on the fact that we now had no steady income.

Oh, my husband is wise and he was careful before leading our family on this new adventure, but as it is with self-employment, guarantees are much less to come by.

But bills add up and expenses increase (hello health insurance) and life gets a little tighter.

As my husband’s stress level increased, my natural inclination to rescue kicked in. I can earn the money, I can help us, I will make things better.

Except that not only did I not feel the freedom in my heart to jump in and rescue, the times I tried seemed thwarted. On top of that, any trickling income I did have had all but disappeared. And there it was, in the quiet of my heart: wait on the Lord and trust Him for your needs.

The Lord would provide for us. I didn’t need to rescue.

And you know, even during the hardest times when no work was in sight, we were okay, we always had enough. And work would show up last minute.

Through this experience, we have learned so much about depending on and trusting in the Lord for our needs. At one point, to encourage us, the Lord brought a timely word from George Müller, and it was this:

My dear brother, it is not your work that supports your family, but the Lord.”

It is God who takes care of us, no matter what happens to us financially or otherwise. He is kind and good and cares for us. Further more, it has been cemented in my heart that the Lord’s love language is not money. If we were to lose everything, we’d be okay, because we have Him.

So this year, I learned in a deeper way that the Lord is our provider, and we can trust Him as we walk by faith in this journey.

Sarah Mae